9 months ago From illinoisagconnection.com
U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Al Franken (D-MN), John Thune (R-SD), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), and 26 of their Senate colleagues sent a bipartisan letter to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy urging the agency to firmly support the future of biofuels and revise its proposed waiver of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The Senators shared their concerns regarding the proposed rule's potential impact on our nation's energy security, the environment, and economic growth, particularly in rural communities.
"Congress passed the RFS to increase the amount of renewable fuel utilized in our nation's fuel supply. The Administration's proposal is a significant step backward -- undermining the goal of increasing biofuels production as a domestic alternative to foreign oil consumption," the Senators wrote. "Further, the proposed waiver places at risk both the environmental benefits from development of advanced biofuels and rural America's economic future."
The following Senators also signed on to today's letter: Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Max Baucus (D-MT), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Roy Blunt (R-MO), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Dan Coats (R-IN), Joe Donnelly (D-IN), Deb Fischer (R-NE), Tom Harkin (D-IA), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), John Hoeven (R-ND), Mike Johanns (R-NE), Tim Johnson (D-SD), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Mark Udall (D-CO), Ed Markey (D-MA), Claire McCaskill (D-MO), Patty Murray (D-WA), Jack Reed (D-RI), Schatz (D-HI), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA).
The EPA's proposed rule would set the biodiesel target at 1.28 billion gallons, which is below current industry production levels of around 1.7 billion gallons. It would also reduce the total biofuels target to 15.2 billion gallons. This is 1.34 billion gallons below the 2013 target of 16.55 billion gallons, and almost 3 billion gallons below the 2014 statutory target of 18.15 billion gallons.